Undergraduate Technical and Professional Internships - Summer 2023

Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL)
Reference Code
Application Deadline
2/15/2023 5:00:00 PM Eastern Time Zone

Oak Ridge National Laboratory provides opportunities for undergraduate students to engage with ORNL projects, connect with ORNL staff and researchers, and join associated enrichment activities. The program is designed to complement academic programs by utilizing the unique resources of Oak Ridge National Laboratory to enhance science, mathematics, engineering, and technology education; encourage careers in science and technology; and improve scientific literacy. ORNL is the largest science and energy laboratory in the Department of Energy system.  Areas of research include materials, neutron sciences, energy, high-performance computing, systems biology and national security.  

ORNL boasts state-of-the-art capabilities across a wide range of scientific and engineering disciplines, including  materials science and engineeringcomputer and computational scienceneutron scatteringneutron science and technologybiological and environmental researchnational securitiesnuclear physics and engineeringfusion and fission science and technology, and energy efficiency and renewable energy (building technologiesadvanced manufacturingtransportation technologies).

Oak Ridge is also the place to be for scientists and engineers who want to be leaders in their disciplines while addressing challenging problems in a multidisciplinary environment. Our researchers work in laboratories with world-class, often unique, facilities including the Spallation Neutron SourceHigh Flux Isotope ReactorCenter for Nanophase Materials SciencesOak Ridge Leadership Computing FacilityNational Transportation Research CenterManufacturing Demonstration FacilityBuildings Technologies Research and Innovation CenterCenter for Advanced Simulation of Light Water Reactors, and many more.

Diversity is Key

Scientific discovery is a team effort. Researchers, engineers, and technical and business professionals support achievements in science and technology by helping to manage and operate research projects and facilities. We believe the teams required to solve the nation's most pressing scientific challenges are those that combine a wide range of backgrounds and perspectives.

Program Details

  • Ten-week summer internship
  • Full-time participation (40 hours/week)
  • Appointments will start on May 22, 2023. Appointments will end on July 28, 2023. Dates for individual appointments may be flexible to account for academic calendars.
  • Appointments will be conducted on-site in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.


Students must be a U.S. citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) at the time of application.

Eligibility Requirements

To be considered for this opportunity, applicants must:

  • Be currently enrolled full-time or have recently graduated with an undergraduate degree, as described in the two cases below.
    • Applicants may be currently enrolled as a full-time undergraduate student in a degree-seeking program at an accredited college or university (including accredited community colleges) at the time of application
    • Applicants may also be a recent associate or bachelor's graduate from an accredited institution (including recent graduates currently enrolled or planning to enroll in graduate studies that are not yet eligible for the ORNL Graduate Technical Professional Internship program). The time period between receipt of an undergraduate degree and starting the TPI appointment must be two years or less.
      • Applicants must have have completed at least one semester (or academic quarter, if applicable) and at least 12 credit hours toward a degree at the time of application.
      • Individuals who will have started a graduate degree program by the start of the appointment should apply to the Graduate Technical and Professional Internship program.
  • Have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • Be 18 years of age

Application Review and Appointment Offer Process

  • Applications are reviewed directly by ORNL staff with an available project.
  • Selections and appointment offers will be made on a rolling basis.
  • Selected students must respond to their offer within ten (10) days of receipt of the offer.

During the Appointment

Appointments require a commitment to the project at ORNL. The participant's project must be conducted in a manner and according to a time schedule that meets the overall research needs of ORNL.


All TPI participants are required to submit an appointment reflection and present a poster or technical talk at the end of the program.

Participants may also have the opportunity to collaborate on manuscripts and/or to join conferences, poster sessions, and other opportunities to present or publish their research.


Participants receive a biweekly stipend. Stipend payments are taxable as an educational benefit. There will be a delay after starting before you receive your first stipend. You should be prepared to cover all personal expenses for the first 30 days of your appointment.

  • Stipend: $650 to $750 per week (paid bi-weekly)
  • Housing: Housing assistance will be provided.


Eligible participants whose permanent address is more than 50 miles from ORNL will receive a travel reimbursement of up to $1,000 for round-trip domestic travel to and from ORNL.


All awards and active participation in the program are contingent upon security access approval to Oak Ridge National Laboratory, agreement with the Terms of Appointment, and completion of all contingencies in the offer letter. All contingencies of an appointment offer must be met before the applicant can begin an appointment.

  • Students are subject to DOE clearance approval for laboratory access.
  • TPI participants are required to have coverage under a health insurance plan and must provide proof of such coverage. It is your responsibility to secure insurance coverage before arriving at the appointment site.

The application will require:

  • Profile information
  • Educational details (i.e. dates of attendance/graduation, GPAs, majors, etc.)
  • Relevant Experience
  • Awards and honors
  • Statement of Purpose: goals, experience, skills, and personal information
  • Technical and professional areas of interest
  • An updated resume or CV, 2 page limit (.pdf upload)
  • Academic records - For this opportunity, an unofficial transcript or copy of academic records may be submitted showing name, school name, current/enrolled classes, and GPA (.pdf upload)
  • Contact information for recommenders, including current email addresses. Recommendation letters should address the applicant’s academic record and potential for success in a technical and professional internship, as demonstrated by intellectual merit, research/technical, communication, and teamwork skills. Applicants must provide at least one letter from a faculty member. Recommenders cannot be a family member.

All documents must be submitted via Zintellect. All application components must be completed and received in the system in order to be considered.

Applications will be accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis until February 15, 2023 at 5:00 PM EST OR until available spaces are filled.

For questions, contact ORNL-USO@orise.orau.gov.

Eligibility Requirements
  • Citizenship: LPR or U.S. Citizen
  • Degree: Associate's Degree or Bachelor's Degree received within the last 24 months or currently pursuing.
  • Overall GPA: 3.00
  • Discipline(s):
    • Business (11 )
    • Communications and Graphics Design (6 )
    • Computer, Information, and Data Sciences (17 )
    • Earth and Geosciences (21 )
    • Engineering (27 )
    • Environmental and Marine Sciences (14 )
    • Life Health and Medical Sciences (48 )
    • Mathematics and Statistics (11 )
    • Other Non-S&E (13 )
    • Other Physical Sciences (12 )
    • Other S&E-Related (2 )
    • Physics (16 )
    • Social and Behavioral Sciences (29 )
  • Age: Must be 18 years of age

I certify that all information I have provided is correct and accurate to the best of my knowledge.